Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Waiting on Wednesday (26): Evertrue

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine!

This week, I am DYING for...

Evertrue (Everneath, #3) - Brodi Ashton
January 21, 2014
Balzer + Bray (Harper)

Since this is the third and final book in this awesome trilogy, I will be posting the synopsis to book one, Everneath, to avoid spoilers:

Last spring, Nikki Beckett vanished, sucked into an underworld known as the Everneath. Now she’s returned—to her old life, her family, her boyfriend—before she’s banished back to the underworld . . . this time forever. She has six months before the Everneath comes to claim her, six months for good-byes she can’t find the words for, six months to find redemption, if it exists.

Nikki longs to spend these precious months forgetting the Everneath and trying to reconnect with her boyfriend, Jack, the person most devastated by her disappearance—and the one person she loves more than anything. But there’s just one problem: Cole, the smoldering immortal who enticed her to the Everneath in the first place, has followed Nikki home. Cole wants to take over the throne in the underworld and is convinced Nikki is the key to making it happen. And he’ll do whatever it takes to bring her back, this time as his queen.

As Nikki’s time on the Surface draws to a close and her relationships begin slipping from her grasp, she is forced to make the hardest decision of her life: find a way to cheat fate and remain on the Surface with Jack or return to the Everneath and become Cole’s queen.

Everneath is a captivating story of love, loss, and immortality from debut author Brodi Ashton.

Guys. Guys. GUYS. I love this series so, so, so much - it's ridiculous how much I adore these books. And I'm so sad to see this series ending, but I cannot wait for Evertrue. I must know what happens to Nikki, Cole, and Jack! January 21, can you come sooner? Please?

What are you waiting on this week?

Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Brad About Books: Fury by Elizabeth Miles

Read on June 21, 2013
Published: August 30, 2011
Publisher: Simon Pulse (Simon & Schuster)
Format: Hardcover
Page Count: 370 pages
Source: Purchased
Series: Fury, #1

It’s winter break in Ascension, Maine. The snow is falling and everything looks pristine and peaceful. But not all is as it seems...

Between cozy traditions and parties with her friends, Emily loves the holidays. And this year’s even better—the guy she’s been into for months is finally noticing her. But Em knows if she starts things with him, there’s no turning back. Because his girlfriend is Em’s best friend.

On the other side of town, Chase is having problems of his own. The stress of his home life is starting to take its toll, and his social life is unraveling. But that’s nothing compared to what’s really haunting him. Chase has done something cruel...something the perfect guy he pretends to be would never do. And it’s only a matter of time before he’s exposed.

In Ascension, mistakes can be deadly. And three girls—three beautiful, mysterious girls—are here to choose who will pay. Em and Chase have been chosen.

Sometimes sorry isn't enough.

I have no idea why this book and I didn't click. While Fury brought a unique plot and an outstanding premise to the table, it didn't deliver for me. I guess this book just wasn't for me.

Oh my gosh, this book sounded awesome. And the crazy thing? It was awesome! But unfortunately, the keyword is was. I was really loving the first 75 pages of this book - they set up the suspense and world so nicely, and I was excited to see where the story would go next. That's the thing though: it didn't go anywhere. After page 150, I noticed that nothing was pushing the plot along. It was staying still and repeating the same techniques, and I just wasn't a fan of that. The first 75 pages were epic, but the book went downhill after that for me.

Greek myth re-tellings are great in my book. They're actually one of my favorite genres to read about. But never had I read a book about the Furies (directly about the Furies, anyway), so I was very eager to see how they would be handled in Fury. And the actual Furies were very interesting! They're deceptive and a bit disturbed, but Miles created them to be such twisted and awesome characters. And I did enjoy some other characters! Em was a great protagonist (I connected to her right away), but I can't say the same about Chase. He was too whiny and oblivious for me to like.

Even though I've had a month to decide why I didn't enjoy this book, I still can't come up with a clear answer. Was it the pacing? The characters? Certain scenes that gave me chill bumps, and not in a good way? I can't decide. I just know that this wasn't the book for me. I might be for you! Who knows. I wish I could've liked it better, though. I really, really do.

Overall, Fury disappointed me on major levels. Though the plot sounded epic and I knew it was destined to be a great book, it didn't live up to my expectations.

M Y   R A T I N G

Sunday, July 28, 2013

Brad About Books: A Fractured Light by Jocelyn Davies

Read on June 14, 2013
Published: September 25, 2012
Publisher: HarperTeen
Format: Hardcover
Page Count: 337 pages
Source: Purchased
Series: A Beautiful Dark, #2

This review is entirely spoiler free, even if you haven't read book one, A Beautiful Dark.

A Fractured Light is a marvelous and outstanding sequel that not only surpassed book one - it blew it out of the water. Easily one of my favorite sequels!

I really enjoyed book one, but I had no idea how powerful and epic A Fractured Light would be! Tons of action and fast-paced, tension-filled scenes can be found in this second book - it's absolutely impossible to put down. If I wasn't reading, A Fractured Light was the only thing on my mind; it was that addictive. I ate this second book up like it was nothing, and I fell in love even more with this world and these phenomenal characters! If you're a fan of anything paranormal, the Beautiful Dark trilogy is a must-read. Riveting!

After the tragic and fantastic cliffhanger that A Beautiful Dark leaves us with, I was very eager to jump back into this world. Our protagonist, Skye, is a changed person thanks to the ending of book one, and I appreciated how Jocelyn Davies developed Skye's character even further. And of course, we can't leave out Asher and Devin: these two brothers are a mess! I also love how Davies creates these brothers as light and dark. They are absolutely different, and we get to see different sides to both of them in A Fractured Light! I can't even express to how much I love these characters - and this series in general!

So. Much. Insanity! There is never a dull moment in A Fractured Light. If we're not on the battlefield with these characters, we're learning more about these paranormal creatures and Skye's history. The dreaded "Sequel Syndrome" passed right over A Fractured Light - I'm not even sure how Jocelyn Davies did it, but she created a sequel that captured me wholly and had me locked into this world long after I turned the final page. So fantastic and so amazing. Highly recommended!

Overall, A Fractured Light is marvelous gem that shouldn't be missed. Hauntingly beautiful and absolutely addicting, I couldn't get enough of this book! More, please!

M Y    R A T I N G

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Brad About Books: This Side of Jealousy by Lili Peloquin

Read on July 23, 2013
Expected Publication Date: August 20, 2013
Publisher: Razorbill (Penguin)
Format: ARC
Page Count: 288 pages
Source: Arcycling
Series: The Innocents, #2

This review is entirely spoiler free, even if you haven't read book one, The Innocents.

This Side of Jealousy is a stunning sequel that gives off the perfect vibe for not only summer, but an intriguing mystery. For fans of Revenge and Pretty Little Liars  - this sequel delivers!

I loved The Innocents so much, and I was definitely excited to jump back into the world of Serenity Point! This seaside town offers so many secrets; it's impossible to put these books down. I tore through these pages, desperate to know what would happen to these sisters. And these sisters have been through it all. Lili Peloquin balanced each sister's personality so well. We have Alice, the quiet and reserved one, and Charlie, the outgoing and wild sister - and since this series switches POVs, I could see how it would be hard to get jumbled up with this duo. But Peloquin veers away from the norm and wove Charlie and Alice together so uniquely and great. This just added to my ever growing list of why I love these books!

Serenity Point is a place I'd love to visit! Its residents harbor many dark and sinister secrets, and many secrets get brought to light in This Side of Jealousy. Sequels can be tricky - you can either build upon the world and make an even more interesting story, or you can stay flat and keep with the same world and characters, not developing them or pushing them forward. Luckily, This Side of Jealousy built upon not only the world, but the characters. Peloquin built the characters in The Innocents, and in the second novel, she broke them and tore them down. Which is awesome! More problems for Alice and Charlie arise, and this sequel doesn't feel forced or slow. So, so great. The perfect summer read!

And it's so easy to get invested into these novels - I sure have. The Innocents series is highly addictive, massively engaging, and overall, a one of a kind revenge story. But I love how revenge isn't the total feel for this series - there are many tones and undertones: romance, family, friendship. They all play a major part in this series, and when combined, they make for an awesome story. Needless to say, I loved This Side of Jealousy so much!

Overall, This Side of Jealousy is a marvelous sequel that gripped me, enticed me, and never let me go. I can't wait to see where the rest of the series takes us!

M Y   R A T I N G

Friday, July 26, 2013

Brad About Books: Love in the Time of Global Warming by Francesca Lia Block

Read from April 1 to 2, 2013
Expected Publication Date: August 27, 2013
Publisher: Henry Holt and Co. (Macmillan)
Format: ARC
Page Count: 240 pages
Source: Publisher in exchange for an honest review

(Sorry, but I have to point out that this cover is amazing)

Seventeen-year-old Penelope (Pen) has lost everything—her home, her parents, and her ten-year-old brother. Like a female Odysseus in search of home, she navigates a dark world full of strange creatures, gathers companions and loses them, finds love and loses it, and faces her mortal enemy.

In her signature style, Francesca Lia Block has created a world that is beautiful in its destruction and as frightening as it is lovely. At the helm is Pen, a strong heroine who holds hope and love in her hands and refuses to be defeated.

Love in the Time of Global Warming is an original and vivid story that captured me with its beautiful prose and lush world-building. A stellar novel that shouldn't be missed!

The best part about Love in the Time of Global Warming? It's so unique! I have never read a book like this, and I appreciate Block weaving together a wholly original story that hooked me from the first page and never let me go. The entire concept of this novel sounds fantastic, and it lives up to the hype! A huge disaster wipes out the world, monsters roam the land, and darkness lurks around every corner. How could that not intrigue you? The world was so achingly beautiful and eerie - I never wanted to put  Love in the Time of Global Warming down!

World-building is a major part of the story for me, and this world has been ruined and destroyed - but it's so vivid and awesome! I loved getting to explore this world with Pen, and though she encounters many obstacles, she trudges through them; she's a fantastic character. While Love in the Time of Global Warming comes off as weird and odd, there's so much more to this story. I found that the farther I got into the story, I discovered layers upon layers to this world, characters, and concept in general. It was so, so great.

And the writing! Gah! It took me a little to get situated with Block's style, but after awhile, I sank deeper and deeper into the story - the writing was brilliant! It's lyrical and mysterious, yet at the same time, gorgeous and haunting. Love in the Time of Global Warming is one of the most original books I've read in a long time, and I loved it to pieces.

Overall, Love in the Time of Global Warming is a riveting, luminous read that unfolds with a deeper meaning and wonderful world. One of a kind!

M Y    R A T I N G

Thursday, July 25, 2013

Brad About Books: Starry Nights by Daisy Whitney

Read on July 13, 2013
Expected Publication Date: September 3, 2013
Publisher: Bloomsbury
Format: ARC
Page Count: 288 pages
Source: ALA

Seventeen-year-old Julien is a romantic—he loves spending his free time at the museum poring over the great works of the Impressionists. But one night, a peach falls out of a Cezanne, Degas ballerinas dance across the floor, and Julien is not hallucinating.

The art is reacting to a curse that trapped a beautiful girl, Clio, in a painting forever. Julien has a chance to free Clio and he can't help but fall in love with her. But love is a curse in its own right. And soon paintings begin to bleed and disappear. Together Julien and Clio must save the world's greatest art . . . at the expense of the greatest love they've ever known.

Like a master painter herself, Daisy Whitney brings inordinate talent and ingenuity to this romantic, suspenseful, and sophisticated new novel.A beautifully decorated package makes it a must-own in print.

Starry Nights is whimsical, magical read that had me completely enthralled and utterly captivated. Such a fun read!

I'll start with what I did enjoy about Starry Nights: the atmosphere of Paris was perfectly captured. I felt like I was walking around the galleries with Julien and Clio, and I could see the City of Light in my head so clearly. And for that, I applaud Whitney! The world was so beautiful, and it makes me want to go visit Paris! I'm not a good drawer/painter whatsoever, so it was nice to read about an artist! Julien is laid back and is never caught up with his emotions - he's just a mellow, cool character. And Clio was so great! She's spent her life all alone, but when she meets Julien, she becomes invincible. The characters are so diverse and wholly unique - it's one of the many reasons why I enjoyed Starry Nights!

But I have to be honest when I say that not everything settled well with me with this book. While I did enjoy the majority of it, a few things ticked at my brain. The first would have to be saving the art - I found some of the problems and dilemmas to be a bit repetitive, and I would get sucked out of the book at times. Luckily, Julien and Clio brought me back into the story easily, but still, it was a bit redundant. And I was never quite sure if I totally understood Clio's character: was she just a love interest or was she something more to Julien? Something that would change his life? I couldn't ever tell, and though I did like Clio's character, she wasn't my favorite part of Starry Nights.

That's not to say that I didn't enjoy this book - I truly did! I think I set my expectations a tad bit high for this one, and not all of them were met. If you're looking for a great summer read with an amazing atmosphere, gorgeous writing, and a romance written in the stars like none other, Starry Nights is the book for you!

Overall, Starry Nights is fun read that will have readers falling for these characters and begging for more.

M Y    R A T I N G

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Brad About Books: Life After Theft by Aprilynne Pike

Published: April 30, 2013
Publisher: HarperTeen
Format: ARC
Page Count: 352 pages
Source: Arcycling

Moving to a new high school sucks. Especially a rich-kid private school. With uniforms. But nothing is worse than finding out the first girl you meet is dead. And a klepto. 

No one can see or hear Kimberlee except Jeff, so--in hopes of bringing an end to the snarkiest haunting in history--he agrees to help her complete her "unfinished business." But when the enmity between Kimberlee and Jeff's new crush, Sera, manages to continue posthumously, Jeff wonders if he's made the right choice.

Clash meets sass in this uproarious modern-day retelling of Baroness Orczy's The Scarlet Pimpernel.

Life After Theft is an engrossing novel with an excellent plot and a mind-blowing ending! I couldn't put it down!

I was so, so excited when I received this novel. I had super high expectations (since this was one of my biggest anticipations of 2013), and it totally met all of my expectations. I can't stop gushing over how much this novel was amazing. I absolutely loved reading every single second of Life After Theft, and I applaud Aprilynne Pike for making such a fun and exciting novel!

The characters were brilliant. Being inside Jeff's hand was awesome: he's definitely a great protagonist. He was smart, funny, and someone I would want as a best friend. Kimberlee... oh my gosh, how I loved Kimberlee. I felt sorry for her during the entire course of the book, but then again, she was so sassy and quick-to-remark, I fell in love with her hard.

Pike's writing style flowed off the page so easily. Going on this voyage with our characters was excellent, and Aprilynne Pike created such a captivating world, I could never break myself away from Life After Theft. Her writing style felt authentic and alive; I felt like these characters were real. She simply did a fantastic job with this novel.

The plot was so different and so unique. I push this onto everybody in you're looking for something original and extraordinary. Life After Theft is such a beautiful and heart-shattering novel. Words can't begin to describe how much you need this novel in your bookish life.

Overall, Life After Theft is another stunning novel from a masterful author. Needing something epic and wonderful in your reading life? Life After Theft is the perfect book!

M Y   R A T I N G:

Monday, July 22, 2013

Brad About Books: Sweet Legacy by Tera Lynn Childs + GIVEAWAY (US/CAN Only)

Read on July 14, 2013
Expected Publication Date: September 3, 2013
Publisher: Katherine Tegen (Harper)
Format: ARC
Page Count: 384 pages
Source: ALA
Series: Medusa Girls, #3

This review is entirely spoiler free, even if you haven't started this series.

Read my reviews for the first two books in this series:

Sweet Legacy is an epic and pulse-pounding conclusion to one of my favorite series of all time. Tera Lynn Childs has done it again - Sweet Legacy is marvelous!

I'm a huge fan of Greek mythology re-tellings, and the Medusa Girls trilogy is my favorite Greek re-telling series... ever! They're so good! And upon finishing Sweet Legacy, I knew that this was the best book of the series. The characters have developed so much since we first met them - the cool part? Every character develops. Not just one. All of them. - and I absolutely adored that. Childs's vivid and wonderful trilogy comes to a stunning conclusion in Sweet Legacy, and it will not disappoint readers whatsoever.

WAR. WAR WAR WAR. There is so much of it in Sweet Legacy! Like the first two books, it's impossible to set this novel down. Especially since we have a stranger toying with one sister's mind, another sister is falling hard for someone she isn't suppose to, and the last sister is warrior who is on the verge of being completely shattered. Sweet Legacy throws so many plot twists at the reader, and there is never a dull moment. I was actually shocked at some of the events! Sweet Legacy is more brutal and darker than the previous novels (with war coming, it has to be - and it's totally awesome!), and it is just so. good. If you haven't picked up this trilogy, you must! Fantastic!

And oh my gosh! That ending! I kid you not, I was freaking out during the final 30 pages of Sweet Legacy - I had no idea what in the world to expect! Some endings aren't satisfying and leave you hanging, but that's not the case with this amazing trilogy. Childs wraps everything together so perfectly. I can't even begin to tell you how much I love this book and this trilogy. I'm so sad it's over, but I couldn't have asked for a better ending. Phenomenal.

Overall, Sweet Legacy is one of the best endings I've ever read. Tera Lynn Childs is one master of storytelling! Brutal, original, and wholly captivating, Sweet Legacy is magnificent!

And since I love Sweet Legacy so much, I'm giving away an ARC of it! This contest is US/CAN only. Be sure to enter down below - you won't want to miss this ending! It's so good!

M Y    R A T I N G

Sunday, July 21, 2013

Brad About Books: Doll Bones by Holly Black

Read on July 8, 2013
Published: May 7, 2013
Publisher: Margaret K. McElderry Books (Simon & Schuster)
Format: Hardcover
Page Count: 244 pages
Source: Library

Zach, Poppy and Alice have been friends for ever. They love playing with their action figure toys, imagining a magical world of adventure and heroism. But disaster strikes when, without warning, Zach’s father throws out all his toys, declaring he’s too old for them. Zach is furious, confused and embarrassed, deciding that the only way to cope is to stop playing . . . and stop being friends with Poppy and Alice. But one night the girls pay Zach a visit, and tell him about a series of mysterious occurrences. Poppy swears that she is now being haunted by a china doll – who claims that it is made from the ground-up bones of a murdered girl. They must return the doll to where the girl lived, and bury it. Otherwise the three children will be cursed for eternity...

Doll Bones is a slow-building, whimsical tale that sent chills down my spine and made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up. Deliciously creepy!

I have been wanting to read Doll Bones ever since it came out - it just looks so eerie and wonderful! When I started it, I came across a problem I had with the book: there's not enough action. I reached the 100 page mark and noticed that nothing significantly moved the plot forward. While Doll Bones does certainly have some freaky and spine-tingling moments, there were times I caught myself drifting off and disconnecting with the story - which made me sad! I was really looking forward to this book, and I have to be honest, it let me down a bit.

Getting pass the slow moments was tricky, but Doll Bones does have pulse-pounding scenes. Towards the end of the book, I was looking over my shoulder and had a tingling feeling in my gut; which is awesome! I love it when a book can do that to me! Though I wasn't a fan of the entire book, there were definitely moments that I loved about Doll Bones. It just didn't live up to my expectations, unfortunately.

The whole doll thing? Three kids being cursed for eternity? Again, A CREEPY DOLL?! Yes please. This china doll (made up of ground-up bones of a murdered girl; WHAT?!) was so creepy and frightening. I never knew if I should trust the doll or try to burn it with fire! And Holly Black can weave out a suspense story like none other. Though I was disconnected from Doll Bones at times, I had to keep turning those pages to figure out what would happen next!

Overall, I have mixed feelings about Doll Bones. Some parts I like, others I didn't.

M Y    R A T I N G

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Brad About Books: Sweet Shadows by Tera Lynn Childs

Read on July 9, 2013
Published: September 4, 2012
Publisher: Katherine Tegen (Harper)
Format: Hardcover
Page Count: 328 pages
Source: Purchased
Series: Medusa Girls, #2

This review is entirely spoiler free, even if you haven't read book one, Sweet Venom.

Sweet Shadows is an electric and dazzling sequel that captured me immediately, shook me around, and never let me go. This second novel not only surpassed the ever-awesome first installment, it blew it out of the water.

After reading Sweet Shadows, I can confirm that the Medusa Girls trilogy is one of my favorite series EVER! I'm a huge fan of re-tellings and Greek mythology, so the two of them put together is awesome. Believe me when I say, this series is addictive. They're impossible to put down, and the action scenes are irresistible! And I love that this trilogy has triplets - not twins, but actual triplets. With that being said, there are three POVs in this series, and Childs handles each character so well. They're all different in their own unique way, and they all have qualities that I love about them! Gretchen has to be my favorite - she's the kick-butt-now, take-names-later kind of girl, and she's just so awesome. Plus, who doesn't like a monster huntress? But she's not the only huntress: Grace is the nice one of the girls, but don't get on her bad side. She's also a great huntress. And Greer is naïve going into the "business" (who wouldn't be?), but she definitely redeems herself in Sweet Shadows. I love all of these characters, and this series, so much!

I have to talk about the plot of Sweet Shadows. While Sweet Venom was engaging and awesome, Sweet Shadows knocked it out of the ballpark. I'm a huge fan of Greek re-tellings, and though this isn't a direct re-telling, it's still one of my favorite series. Monsters are leaking into the human world, and it's up to the triplet huntresses to seal them away where they belong. And Sweet Shadows makes these monsters even more terrifying. The stakes are raised higher more than I dared to imagine, and I adored it for that. I like it when an author makes a daring sequel, and Sweet Shadows definitely was. This series is an absolute must-read!

I didn't see that ending coming! As I was flipping these pages, I had NO idea what to expect or have any clue what was going to happen next. And I will admit, some sequels fall to the dreaded Sequel Slump Syndrome, but that totally passed over Sweet Shadows! I have no clue how Tera Lynn Childs did it, but she made this sequel even better than its predecessor! So good!

Needless to say, Sweet Shadows was incredibly epic and utterly jaw-dropping. Tension-filled and fast-paced, readers won't be able to tear their eyes away from this phenomenal second installment!

M Y    R A T I N G

Friday, July 19, 2013

Brad About Books: Unbreakable by Kami Garcia

Read from July 2 to 3, 2013
Expected Publication Date: October 1, 2013
Publisher: Little, Brown BFYR
Format: ARC
Page Count: 320 pages
Source: ALA
Series: Legion, #1

Supernatural meets The Da Vinci Code in this action-packed paranormal thriller, the first book in a new series from New York Times bestselling author Kami Garcia. 

I never believed in ghosts. Until one tried to kill me.

When Kennedy Waters finds her mother dead, her world begins to unravel. She doesn’t know that paranormal forces in a much darker world are the ones pulling the strings. Not until identical twins Jared and Lukas Lockhart break into Kennedy’s room and destroy a dangerous spirit sent to kill her. The brothers reveal that her mother was part of an ancient secret society responsible for protecting the world from a vengeful demon — a society whose five members were all murdered on the same night.

Now Kennedy has to take her mother’s place in the Legion if she wants to uncover the truth and stay alive. Along with new Legion members Priest and Alara, the teens race to find the only weapon that might be able to destroy the demon — battling the deadly spirits he controls every step of the way.

Suspense, romance, and the paranormal meet in this chilling urban fantasy, the first book in a new series from Kami Garcia, bestselling coauthor of the Beautiful Creatures novels.

Unbreakable is a chilling and haunting read that completely absorbed me and kept me turning pages late into the night. The perfect spooky read!

I started Unbreakable late at night, and I have to say, that was a bad decision. Why? Not only was it freaking me out and sent chills down my spine, it had me wrapped up in this mysterious and eerie world - I didn't want to put it down for a second! I was emerged into the world right from page one, and I was enthralled and captivated by the story. It's unputdownable. I really enjoyed Beautiful Creatures, but woah, Unbreakable was epic! Absolutely loved this one!

Kennedy was such a great protagonist. She has had a hard and sad life, but everything changes once she joins the Legion. I loved being on this journey with her, and she never let me down - not once! And of course, everybody in the Legion was awesome. I can't wait to see where the story is taken to in the next book! Kami Garcia spun a unique tale of ghosts and demons, and while I stepped out of my comfort zone to read this (demons aren't my thing, and I don't read a whole lot of ghost stories), I'm so thrilled I did. It's one of a kind and mind-bending. And I loved the research in Unbreakable! I could tell that Garcia put a lot of thought and effort into this masterpiece of a book, and I really appreciate that! Unbreakable is impossible to put down!

Also, I want to add that Unbreakable is one of those books that will send chills soaring down your spine and will boggle your mind. I stayed up so late reading this one - you know it's a good spooky read when it makes you want to sleep with the lights on! I can't even begin to tell you all how much I loved this book. Fantastic, marvelous, and straight up amazing. More, please!

Overall, Unbreakable is a new favorite book of all-time for me! Haunting and phenomenal, Unbreakable is a true masterpiece that I adore to pieces!

M Y    R A T I N G

Thursday, July 18, 2013

Brad About Books: The Bitter Kingdom by Rae Carson

Read on July 8, 2013
Expected Publication Date: August 27, 2013
Publisher: Greenwillow (Harper)
Format: ARC
Page Count: 433 pages
Source: ALA
Series: Fire and Thorns, #3

This review is entirely spoiler free, even if you haven't started this series.

Read my reviews for the first two books in the series:

The Bitter Kingdom is an epic and highly-satisfying conclusion to one of the best fantasy series ever written. Thrilling and pulse-pounding, The Bitter Kingdom is a fantastic ending - Rae Carson is officially the master of fantasy!

If you don't know, I am a high fantasy junkie - I devour those books up like they're nothing. And now that I have completed this trilogy, I can say that the Fire and Thorns trilogy is my favorite high fantasy series ever! The world-building is phenomenal. It's so complex and rich and very easy to dive into! Another favorite part about this series? Each book takes you on a different journey to a new place in the world. We don't stay the same part, and it's totally awesome. And while I love every book in this series, The Bitter Kingdom was definitely my favorite! The world grew so much, as well did the characters! It's absolutely phenomenal - I adore this trilogy to pieces!

And that brings me to my next point of why The Bitter Kingdom is a fantastic conclusion: the characters! Oh my gosh! It's no secret that Elisa is one of the strongest characters in YA, and she develops even more in this third book. And based on her situation, she has to become stronger. She was a little bit naïve in the first book (not much), but she knows who she is now, and she knows that she must protect her world. And woah, she is awesome. Carson did an incredible job with Elisa, and I loved being on this journey with her! So, so amazing. AND, we get to see Hector's POV in The Bitter Kingdom! Hector is a great male lead, and to be inside his head was stunning! Every person of the ensemble is one of a kind in this trilogy. I could go on for hours explaining how much I love this series!

The ending! Woah! Talk about fast-paced. It's impossible to put The Bitter Kingdom down for a minute. If I wasn't reading it, it was the only thing on my mind. It completely consumes your mind and it won't go away. I never wanted The Bitter Kingdom to end! And while I am very sad that the series is now over, I couldn't have asked for a better ending. Marvelous!

Overall, The Bitter Kingdom is a fantastic conclusion to one of my favorite series ever. Simply stunning; I'm utterly speechless. One of the best endings I've ever read!

M Y    R A T I N G

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

#YeahYA Nashville Author Stop RECAP!

This past Monday, July 15, I was in Nashville for the Harlequin Teen #YeahYA Author Fest! And it was so. much. FUN! I had an absolute blast! With me was my mom and best friend, and we had so much fun at the event. Since I was the blogger for the tour stop, I had the chance to interview the authors and take notes! (Scroll to the bottom to see the interview!) 

When the event actually began, everyone was so excited!

The front of the crowd

Everyone was dying to ask a question!
Karen Ann Hopkins talking about living in an Amish community

The Q&A was tons and tons of fun!

  • Julie Kagawa never intended on writing a vampire novel - it just happened.
  • Aimee Carter has always loved Greek mythology - even when she was just a little kid - and decided to write a Greek re-telling, but put a twist on it.
  • Karen Ann Hopkins decided to write an Amish story after working with Amish and non-Amish kids on her horse ranch in her community.
  • All of the authors' advice to aspiring writers is to keep trying, even after rejection. We all started in the same place. Learn to take criticism. Also, if you can write about things you know/experienced, it will bring more realism and depth to it.

After the Q&A was done, everyone lined up to get books signed!

This line wrapped around toward the back of the building!

While in line, I finally got to meet one of my Twitter friends, Kayla, in person! She's so awesome!

Yay for bookish people meeting in person! 

AND I got to meet in person one of my blogger best friends, Jessica @ Lovin Los Libros

So happy we got to finally meet in person!!

And when I got my books signed, I was able to sit down with the authors and ask questions!

(left to right) Julie Kagawa, Aimee Carter, Karen Ann Hopkins


A huge thanks to Harlequin Teen and the authors! This experience has been AMAZING!

(left to right) Julie Kagawa, me, Aimee Carter, and Karen Ann Hopkins!

Brad About Books: Romeo Redeemed by Stacey Jay

Read on July 14, 2013
Published: October 9, 2012
Publisher: Delacorte Press (Random House)
Format: ARC
Page Count: 384 pages
Source: Arcycling
Series: Juliet Immortal, #2

This review is entirely spoiler free, even if you haven't read book one, Juliet Immortal.

Romeo Redeemed is a dazzling sequel that burns bright with irresistible romance and a timeless love story. Not only did this book surpass the first installment, it shattered it completely. Loved it so much!

I'll be honest: I thought Juliet Immortal was good, but not as good as I hoped. And I despised Romeo in that book. So reading about his story? I wasn't too thrilled. But woah! One of the biggest surprises I've ever read! I was very shocked at how... authentic Romeo felt. In Juliet Immortal, he was a jerk that only wanted one thing - to save himself. And while in Romeo Redeemed that's his goal, we get to see a new side of him that wasn't presented in book one. And I liked that! I love it when a character flip flops from bad to good over time, and Romeo is one of the most shocking characters I've come across in YA. So obviously, I thought Romeo Redeemed was way better than Juliet Immortal!

I am a huge sucker for re-tellings, and Romeo Redeemed is a new favorite re-telling. I have read Romeo and Juliet before (insta-love, much?), but I have to be quite honest - I prefer this series to the original! It's just much more interesting and captivating. And Romeo Redeemed captured me wholly. I didn't want to set the book down for a minute, and while I did have problems with it (see next paragraph), I found it to be a highly enjoyable and stunning read. 

I didn't find too many flaws with Romeo Redeemed actually! But there were a few. My biggest was Ariel. Gosh, I couldn't stand her! While she is thrust into an odd and different situation, she was way too naïve for my likings. And I felt that Romeo Redeemed detoured away from the plot at times - it switched from Romeo trying to save himself, to Romeo trying to fall in love. Which is interesting, but some scenes were executed that well. But still, Romeo Redeemed was an awesome sequel.

Overall, Romeo Redeemed is an electric and one of a kind sequel that had me in its clutches and biting at my fingernails. A satisfying and epic ending!

M Y    R A T I N G

Waiting on Wednesday (25): No One Else Can Have You

Waiting on Wednesday is a weekly meme hosted by Breaking the Spine!

This week, I'm waiting on...

No One Else Can Have You - Kathleen Hale
Expected Publication Date: January 7, 2014
Publisher: HarperTeen

Small town. Big murder.

Small towns are nothing if not friendly. Friendship, Wisconsin (population: 688) is no different. Around here, everyone wears a smile. And no one ever locks their doors. Until, that is, high school sweetheart Ruth Fried is found murdered. Strung up like a scarecrow in the middle of a cornfield.

Unfortunately, Friendship’s police are more adept at looking for lost pets than catching killers. So Ruth’s best friend, Kippy Bushman, armed with only her tenacious Midwestern spirit and Ruth’s secret diary sets out to find the murderer. But in a quiet town like Friendship—where no one is a suspect—anyone could be the killer.

This book sounds awesome! I love murder mysteries, and No One Else Can Have You sounds right up my alley! Plus? That cover is fantastic.

What are you waiting on this week? Leave links to your WoW post below!